Kristi Closser is an assistant professor at California State University, Fresno since
2017. She earned her B.A. in both chemistry and mathematics from Smith College and
her Ph.D. at UC Berkeley in theoretical chemistry. As an undergraduate at Smith college
she participated in research in both organic and experimental physical chemistry,
but switched to theoretical chemistry in graduate school, where she focused on developing
a novel method for computing excited states of large helium clusters. Before coming
to Fresno, Dr. Closser also did post-doctoral research at Lawrence Berkeley National
Laboratory, and crossed over into the realm of theoretical condensed matter physics.
Areas of Specialty Dr. Closser's research focuses on computing the electronically excited states of atoms
and molecules and their degradation mechanisms. The methods employed are primarily
ab initio, and do not depend on experimental results. By computing observables such
as UV/vis or X-ray absorption spectra direct comparisons can be made and a better
understanding of experimental data can be obtained. One part of the research focuses
on developing better approaches for modeling electronic excitations and critical points
along the degradation pathways, and the other part of the research focuses on applying
the currently available methods to systems ranging from a single molecule to nanoparticles.